I Dream of Utena

Utena decides to stop living up to societal demands.

Utena decides to stop living up to societal demands.

Alright, this one has been a long time in coming. It’s been almost three months since I first gave a very brief description of Utena and why it’s both queer and feminist, and if you haven’t read it, I suggest you go here first. That one was my relatively spoiler-free one, but this one is not holding back, so you know, spoilers.

I’ll start with the lesser spoilers first. As I mentioned before, something that happens throughout the show is other people telling Utena what she can and can’t do because she’s a girl, and her fighting against that. About a third of the way through the show (near the end of the first arc), Utena is finally defeated in a duel by Touga, who uses her dreams of finding her prince against her, making her question if it was him. It wasn’t. Anyway, this complete loss, and his taunting of her throughout the duel and afterwards sends her into a mental breakdown, where she withdraws completely from the world and tosses aside her more tomboyish traits for stereotypical feminine traits. More specifically, she starts acting like a yamato nadeshiko, completely quiet and demure, looking down as she walks, etc. During the course of an entire episode, her friend Wakaba tries to bring her out of it, and in the course of it says something rather iconic and showing of this series’ feminist roots. Utena remarks that she’s acting like a normal girl, to which Wakaba replies “normal isn’t normal for you.” In other words, “this isn’t your normal.” Or “stop following societal norms and be yourself.” Continue reading

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National Hug A Lesbian Day

Hey all! I know I’ve been away for a while, and I have good reasons, which I’ll talk about some next post, but I am back. Today though is not about my absence. Today is National Hug a Lesbian Day! I’m glad we have holidays like this, and I think we should make it international. So to all my girl-loving sisters out there in the queer family, here’s a hug for you. Spread the love, and maybe one day we’ll have a “hug queer guys” day too! We need to take more opportunities to celebrate our community, and days like today are a good start. See you all Tuesday, and have a good weekend!